Saturday, February 13, 2016

Drop Brownie Caramel Sandwich Cookie

I was in the mood for a caramel dessert last week so I threw this together. I made the simple-but-really-delicious drop brownie cookies that I have made several times before. Then this time I slathered one with melted caramel and topped it with another cookie, making a super fudgy, caramelly, decadent sandwich cookie. 

Drop Brownie Caramel Sandwich Cookie
2 c. semisweet chocolate chips
1 (14-oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
½ c. butter
1 c. flour
11 oz. wrapped caramel candies
1-2 T. water or evaporated milk

Preheat oven to 350º. Spray cookie sheets or line with Silpat.

Combine first 3 ingredients in microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes, stopping half-way through to stir. Then stir until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Stir in flour. Let batter sit in bowl for 10 minutes.

Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2-inches apart onto baking sheets. Bake for 7 minutes. Cookies will be soft. Cool on baking sheets 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Unwrap caramels into a microwave-safe bowl and add 1 tablespoon water or evaporated milk. Microwave, stopping and stirring after every 20 seconds, until melted completely. If needed, add more water or evaporated milk. It needs to be spreadable, but not too liquidy.

Spread caramel on bottom of one of the cookies and top with another cookie. Continue with rest of cookies, using desired amount of caramel on each.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Turkey, Pesto and Cranberry Melt

Yep, this is a messy, pumped-up grilled cheese sandwich and it is so good! Bonus: it's so easy. Make your own pesto and cranberry sauce or use store-bought. This classic pairing of turkey and cranberries, along with pesto and melty mozzarella, was on The Hopeless Housewife blog. 

Since I had some pesto leftover from making a pasta dish that I still need to post, I thought I'd throw this together as my daughter Elisa's going-away dinner. She left this morning for New York to sing at Carnegie Hall. Crazy and awesome! Anyway, we loved this sandwich. 

I used deli sliced turkey this time, but I'll use some good roasted turkey next time. You don't really need a recipe once you know the ingredients, but I'll give it to you anyway.

Turkey, Pesto and Cranberry Melt
6 slices of roasted turkey breast
6 slices fresh mozzarella cheese
4 T. basil pesto
6 T. fresh or canned cranberry sauce
4 slices sourdough bread, cut ½ – ¾ inch thick

Heat butter in a skillet over medium heat.

Spread the pesto on the sourdough bread, and then add turkey breast, cranberry sauce, and mozzarella cheese.

Place the sandwich into the skillet and let cook for a few minutes until cheese becomes melty, then flip the sandwich onto the other side and repeat until desired color and look is reached.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Utah Local: Foreign Figures

It's been forever since I posted a local music post. Today I'm introducing you to an awesomely talented group who I've been following for a while now, even before they were called Foreign Figures. They have changed names and have had some changes in people in the band, but they've always been great.

The lead singer is Eric Michels and his brother Steve Michels is the drummer. Seth Dunshee is on bass and Jonny Tanner on guitar. They are talented musicians, singers, songwriters and good friends. They also all happen to be returned missionaries from Orem, Utah.

They say, " Foreign Figures has a unique melodic sound that doesn’t hold to any specific genre. Their influences range from alternative rock to R&B."    The first time I watched them, Imagine Dragons came to mind, but they have their own sound.
Photo Cred: Jake Grey 

The second time I saw them perform, I was sitting in Velour and Eric and Steve's mom just happened to sit next to me. She was obviously very proud of them and pointed out how both of her sons have been lead vocal in different bands and they both write songs.

All of them are so full of energy and they just explode on stage! It's really fun to watch and to listen to. They seriously perform like they're already a world famous band and I bet one day soon they will be. You can follow them on Facebook and check them out on their Website so you don't miss anything along their path to stardom and for info on buying their music and merch.

They've already won competitions like BYU's Battle of the Bands, The Stereo Room's Battle of the Bands and KSL’s Garage to Glory contest. Take a look below at two of their videos and the third is the music of their newly released single. The music is great and the videos are stunning. If you like them, please share on Facebook or wherever because they deserve way more views than they have. Can you tell that I'm a fan?? 

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Sunny Life

Got a pretty short letter from Alex again today, but several photos. He took two of the photos and the others are from an investigator who shared them with Alex and his companion. Then Alex sent them to me.

Life is always sunny, even at night, when you've got the light of the
gospel truth with you! It's easy to forget about, but you can always
be happy as you obey God's commands. 

 My scripture of the week is Alma 26:30, "And we have suffered all
manner of afflictions, and all this, that perhaps we might be the
means of saving some soul; and we supposed that our joy would be full
if perhaps we could be the means of saving some." This was the
attitude of Ammon and his brethren, and it was the attitude of Jesus
Christ Himself when he suffered everything if he could just save one
soul. So, I think it's important to remember.
 The kanji of the week is: 足跡 pronounced "ah-she-ah-toe" and means foot print.

Monday was not that eventful as usual, and we were able to find
someone to talk to and set up an appointment for today with. Hopefully
he read at least part of the Book of Mormon we gave him.
 Tuesday we did a lot of finding, and also visited a less active, and a friend to the missionaries that lives close by to the less active. They're going through a hard time, so I think it was good for them to talk it out with us. Hopefully they can find peace soon. 

 Wednesday we did more finding, and then in the evening we went to English class. We were talking for a long time afterwards with one of the students, and had a great conversation about life with him. We also found out about a Tai Chi place from him, and said we'd go do it with him.

 Thursday was weekly planning and more finding. We met with some potential investigators, but they're busy with tests, so we can't really meet with them. In the evening we tried to find the Tai Chi place but couldn't find it, so we posted some English class fliers, and also went and tried street contacting. 

Friday we had a zone training meeting, and that went great. I always learn so much, and receive revelation from those meetings. We went back home, studied, and then did--can you guess: more finding.
 Sunday was great, because we had an investigator who's getting baptized next week in another area come to our branch. He was really great, and showed how the gospel of Jesus Christ can truly change people into amazing people. The rest of the day was studying or finding.
 Lots of finding this week, but it's been great. God provides, and I trust that He will further His work in His own time. I just need to keep my faith. I hope you all have a great week! Love you all! 


Friday, February 5, 2016

Zucchini Rice

I debated putting this recipe on my blog. Not because it's not really good. It is! It's just super simple so it seems like you don't really need a recipe. But since we liked it, I decided to post it since my blog is my cookbook. We eat a lot of rice and I get tired of plain rice so it was good to add some veggies for something different. The recipe from Chungah calls for black beans, but I didn't have any. I'm sure that would be a great addition.

Zucchini Rice
  • 1 1/2 c. uncooked rice
  • 1 (15-oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-oz.) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 2 zucchini, shredded
  • 2 T. unsalted butter
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 c. chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • In a large saucepan of 3 cups water, cook rice according to package instructions; set aside.

  • Remove from heat and stir in black beans, corn, zucchini, butter, lime juice and cilantro. Cover and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve immediately.